HR Glossary


What is a Probation?

Probation refers to a time period under which the employees are exempted from certain contracts. Probation periods are designed for helping employers and employees to see if they are a good match for each other. 

It is an easier process for an employee to leave the company during their probationary period as they can terminate their contract easily.

How is Probation Different From Confirmed Employment?

Here are the key differences between probation and confirmed employment-

ProbationConfirmed Employment
Probation refers to a period where both the employee and the employer see if they are a good fit for each other. It is basically a trial period for the employees in the company.Confirmed employment means that the employee has gone through their probationary period and is now confirmed to be a part of the company. 
The motive behind this is to give the employees time to adjust and check their performance.The motive behind it is to retain the employees.
Employees in their probationary period receive fewer benefits in comparison to the confirmed employees.Employees with confirmed employment receive all the benefits of the company. 

The key difference between probation and confirmed employment is the status of the employees

Employees in their probationary period are in the trial phase of the job where they don’t have a strict employment contract. The probationary period allows the employees to see whether they are comfortable with the job or not. It is also a period where employers can see if the employee is a good fit for their company or not. If any of the two mentioned parties feel otherwise, they can end this job without any strict measures.

Confirmed employees on the other hand have a confirmed employment letter with them. It means that both the parties feel that they are a good fit for each other and have confirmed the employment of that employee. Confirmed employees cannot leave without any consequences and neither can the employers fire them without just cause. 

How Should You Design Your Probation?

Since probation is such an important aspect of the onboarding process, it should be designed with that seriousness.

Here is how you should design your probation-

  • Before handing out the probation letter to the employee, be absolutely clear as to what are your expectations from the employee.
  • You should always start with the length of your probationary period. It means communicating what will be the duration of the probation for the employee. 
  • After that list, out all the terms and conditions of probation. It means telling the employee about your expectations. The employee should be absolutely clear as to what they are expected to do and how they will be evaluated and what are the performance criteria. For eg: an employee is expected to make a minimum of 50 sales per month. These performance criteria help the employees in understanding their performance levels better.
  • Mention a date for the review of the employee. You should mention that towards the end of the probationary period, you will have a performance review meeting and discuss your future employment status.
  • All of this should be mentioned as clearly as possible to make the probationary period a good experience for both the employer as well as the employee. 

Role of HR for Probation

The role of HR for probation is-

  • They decide the length of the probationary period along with the HOD’s. 
  • They ensure that the offer letter or probationary letter consists of the duration of probation. 
  • Create an annual probation review report and provide the report to their respective departments.
  • Create annual performance reviews and assist in the process of the performance improvement process.
  • Maintain all the records regarding the extension or termination of the probationary period of every employee. 

We hope this blog was able to provide you with some value regarding probation and probationary periods. Explore our HR Glossary for more insightful blogs,

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